Back in the days when documents existed only in physical, printed copies, people would always sign those documents using pens. But today, so many documents are purely digital. As a result, it’s common for people to use electronic signatures (eSignatures) to sign documents.
Doing this, though, requires specialized apps to ensure security and authenticity. And if you plan to use electronic signatures for your business, you probably want to know what the best eSignature apps are.
That’s one of the questions we’ll answer on this page. Here’s what we’ll cover:
Keep reading to find out more about the best document signing apps!
You may have heard the phrases “electronic signature” and “digital signature” used interchangeably before. And if so, that’s fine—in layman’s terms, they both refer to the same thing. On a more technical level, though, they’re slightly different types of signatures.
In the legal sense, an electronic signature is like a regular signature, except that it happens on a screen instead of a sheet of physical paper. For example, if someone signs their name on a tablet, that’s an electronic signature.
A digital signature is different. It might look like a handwritten signature, or it might just be someone’s name in a regular typeface. What sets it apart is that it’s more than just a line of text—it’s encoded with info like the signer’s email address and the time the signature was made.
This adds an additional level of verifiability to the signature that you wouldn’t find with an eSignature.
Now let’s get to the main reason you’re here: Our list of top eSignature apps. Each app on this list is assessed based on qualities like ease of use, features, and price.
There are a lot of electronic signature apps out there, so we’ve selected just five tools to consider on this page. Those tools include:
Here’s a summary of how those tools stack up against one another:
|$20+ per month (free plan available)
|Automated reminders for signatures
|$19+ per month (free plan available)
|$15+ per month
|$13+ per month
|Collecting payments via Braintree
|$10+ per month (free plan available)
|Simplicity and affordability
Now read on to see how they compare in a bit more detail!
Price: $20+ per month (free plan available)
Dropbox Sign is a tool offered by—you guessed it—Dropbox. You may already use Dropbox to store and transfer the files you need signed, in which case it’s almost a no-brainer to use the same platform for actually signing those documents. Of course, this tool also integrates well with other cloud services like Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive.
Dropbox Sign has a few nifty features—for one, it sends automated reminders about signatures, and for another, it allows for mobile-friendly signatures. Also, while Dropbox Sign does offer a free plan, it only includes three documents per month.
Price: $19+ per month (free plan available)
PandaDoc is another of the top eSignature apps out there. It has a few nifty features, like allowing people to customize what their signatures look like and letting you set up notifications to remind people to sign. Just like Dropbox Sign, PandaDoc offers a free plan that’s good for three documents per month.
It’s also worth pointing out that PandaDoc integrates with a variety of different tools, including Nutshell. That’s extremely useful for helping you get signatures from leads in your customer relationship management (CRM) platform.
Price: $15+ per month
One of the biggest pros of using DocuSign is how organized it is. It divides up all your in-queue documents based on what stage of the process they’re in—the ones you’ve sent, the ones that have been signed, the ones that have expired without being signed, and so on.
Additionally, it helps you streamline your process by creating templates and viewing reporting metrics about which documents have been sent out and how many documents are going unsigned.
DocuSign doesn’t offer a free plan, but it does have a free trial.
Price: $13+ per month
Acrobat Sign is a document signing app offered by Adobe. It’s a companion app to Adobe Acrobat. While you can sign documents through the regular version of Acrobat, Acrobat Sign offers some additional features.
What do those features include? It depends partly on which plan you opt for, but some available features include:
Like Docusign, Acrobat Sign doesn’t have a free plan, but it does have a free trial.
Price: $10+ per month (free plan available)
Last on our list of top eSignature apps is SignWell. It earns a spot on this list because it’s simple, easy to use, and offers a free plan. Although it doesn’t offer any fancy extra features, its ease of use makes it a great choice if you’re just looking for something basic that you can start using quickly without paying anything.
Of course, the free plan is limited like with most other tools on this list—you only get three documents per month. However, the paid plans start at $10 per month, so it’s still the cheapest option listed here.
Most of the best eSignature apps are pretty simple, so the process of choosing one shouldn’t be too complicated. Generally, there are only a few factors that you should consider:
By examining those four aspects, you can identify which electronic signature app is right for your business.
Before we wrap up this page, let’s go over some frequently asked questions about document signing apps:
It entirely depends on your business! To find the answer, consider factors like price, reviews, features, and integrations.
Most eSignature apps require a subscription, but some do offer limited free plans. Examples include Dropbox Sign, PandaDoc, and SignWell.
To be considered valid, an eSignature has to be in line with laws like the ESIGN Act. That law states that electronic signatures should:
Other laws may also apply, depending on location.
Once you’ve identified the best electronic signature app for your business, you may be interested in finding some other digital tools to improve your business processes. If so, you don’t have to look very far. You can check out plenty of other helpful lists of tools here on the Nutshell blog!
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